Chapter 2 – Evolution of Public Relations

Did you know that Edward Bernays is considered the father of modern Public Relations? Bernays was the nephew of Sigmund Freud. His public relations model was advocacy and scientific persuasion in which he advocated listening to the audience to receive feedback and therefore be able to formulate a more persuasive message.  His soap sculpture contest sold millions of Ivory Soap bars for Procter & Gamble.

Another interesting charactor is Ivy Lee, known as the first PR counselor; a title he earned by promoting open, honest communications between corporations, the public and the press.

And last but not least, Rex Harlow.  He became known as the father of PR Research.  He founded the American Council on Public Relations, which later became the Public Relations Society of America (PRSA), which sets a code of ethics for its members (www.prsa.org).

It’s very interesting to me to follow the history of public relations through the people who made a difference.  Probably at the time they had no idea they were making history–they were probably just following the dictates of their hearts, doing what they knew to do to make the world a better place at that time–just as we can do today.

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